Another Round...

martin goodall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby martin goodall » Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:33 am

I know nothing about the technology of lubricants. So I am dependent (like most other modellers, I imagine) on recommendations for a lubricant which

(a) will not attack the nylon bevel gears in a Portescap gearbox, and

(b) will 'stick' to the gears, rather than being thrown off as the gears turn.

The grease whch was applied to Portescap gearboxes before they were supplied to the customer obviously fulfilled both these criteria. The problem we have is finding a replacement in order to re-lubricate Portescap gearboxes which have seized up (mainly, it must be admitted, due to their not having been run recently, or at all in some cases).

I understand that LaBelle 102 has been recommended for this application, although I have no knowledge of the technical specifications that make it suitable. I am sure there are other lubricants that will fill the bill, but I have no means of knowing whether the other products that have been mentioned do in fact meet both of the criteria listed above.

Some advice specifically addressed to this point (preferably from someone with expert technical knowledge of these lubricants) would be very welcome.

[P.S. I have some unused grease which was supplied either by Trans-Europ Models as successors to Studiolith, or possibly by Exactoscale in their early days. I beleve it was intended for use with the precision gearboxes that they supplied at the time, rather than for Portescaps, but I and wonder whether this might possibly be suitable?]

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Guy Rixon
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Guy Rixon » Fri Mar 13, 2015 1:45 pm

martin goodall wrote:I have some unused grease which was supplied either by Trans-Europ Models as successors to Studiolith, or possibly by Exactoscale in their early days. I beleve it was intended for use with the precision gearboxes that they supplied at the time, rather than for Portescaps, but I and wonder whether this might possibly be suitable?


I bought some of the grease sold by Exactoscale for gearboxes. Over many years, it dried out and became like rosin. So even if it's the right kind of product for Escap gears, I would not want to risk an old batch on an expensive gearbox.

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grovenor-2685
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Re: Another Round...

Postby grovenor-2685 » Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:45 pm

For the de-luxe approach see http://www.nano-oil.com/Model%20RailRoad.html
Keith

JFS
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Re: Another Round...

Postby JFS » Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:42 pm

I re-built quite a few Portescaps over the years ago using the Mike Trice replacement side frames as well as those in Martin Finney kits. The recommended oil at the time was "Tri-Flow Teflon" which is just a fancy American brand for PTFE cycle oil - no doubt the same stuff Bill describes.

I think the original lubricant (the red stuff) in Portescaps was made by Moebius - but it is pricey:-

https://www.hswalsh.com/product/moebius ... ho9000-2ml

One thing NOT to do is to put any grease anywhere near one. The difficult bit to lubricate in a Portescap is not the gear teeth, it is the hollow mandrels in the gears which run on hardened steel pivot pins. It is when the oil in here dies of old age that they "seize up" (they go "stiff" long before that!). Obviously, the poorer quality oils will die (through oxidation) a lot sooner than the better ones.

If you sniff around the www.hswalsh.com site, you will find dozens of different clock and watch oils raging in price from a few pounds per litre to tens of pounds per mil. Yer pays yer money...

But personally, I would stay away from "LaBelle"-type fancy-American-brand-hype stuff - you are paying for their marketing budget not for good oil.

Usual disclaimer that I have nothing to do with Walsh except to say that they sell good tools and materials and their service is first-class.

Just one thing puzzling me - if I came across an "old" Portescap (as apposed to a newer Portescrap) I would be jumping for joy - not reselling it on ebay... or maybe I misread?

Best wishes,

Philip Hall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Philip Hall » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:06 pm

Howard,

I think it is known that that early RG4s are better than the later ones. I believe this is because the moulds for the gears became worn and so the gearbox itself was noisy. I had a couple of old ones many years ago and they were definitely smoother and quieter than newer ones I've seen. However, I also had a (then) brand new 1219 in about 1988 and it was a stiff old thing, whined like crazy and only ran properly (and really very nicely) on one controller, an AMR handheld with greatly reduced feedback. Even a later acquired Pentroller handheld wasn't much use.

High Level and Branchlines 'boxes and Mashima cans are so much easier. And quieter!

Philip

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Flymo748
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Flymo748 » Sat Mar 14, 2015 8:41 am

Philip Hall wrote:High Level and Branchlines 'boxes and Mashima cans are so much easier. And quieter!

Philip


And that's the reason why mine are going on Ebay. To be sold on to those people that don't have the confidence to assemble a High Level gearbox, despite it being almost idiot-proof. Hell, if I can do it and it works...

Cheers
Flymo
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martin goodall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby martin goodall » Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:10 pm

Just a quick note to thank everyone who has responded to recent queries on this thread.

The information and tips offered are very helpful.

I think I know now what to look for in the way of lubricants.

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Flymo748
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Maths...

Postby Flymo748 » Mon Apr 06, 2015 6:26 pm

Clearly not my strong point...

Having carefully measured the thickness of all six of the driving wheels of my Buckjumper, and produced an average from them. Then taken various readings of the thickness of my standard back-to-back gauge (and this time scribed the number on the outside face of it to avoid doing it next time) to determine what that needed to be.

I added them up and started happily cutting down my split axles to length.

I was just cutting into the third and complex one for it has two splits to isolate the gearbox when the penny dropped. Locomotives have a wheel on each side...

So the axle length should not be 2.46 + 17.78 = 20.24mm

It should be 2.46 + 17.78 + 2.46 = 22.70mm

Oh well, it's a good job that I made up a batch of spares whilst the glue was out!

Cheers
Flymo
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Flymo748
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Sticky business

Postby Flymo748 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 6:45 am

Sometimes things just don't work out...

As usual, I have three or four different things on the go at the same time. This mostly explains the slightly random order of progress displayed on here. I pick one thing up, do a bit, put it down, rinse and repeat...

Over the Easter weekend I had the opportunity to take out some of the "big toys" that I don't usually have the time or the space for in the evenings after work. I had a good session of mouldmaking on the Centricast machine, and took out the spray booth to make some progress on the Buckjumper.

The next stage in the chassis construction is to paint it black (now try and get that tune out of your head...) ready for the mounting of the wheels. To spray the wheels themselves, I masked off the tyres and the axle holes with Humbrol Maskol. My bottle of this must be over a decade old, yet by keeping it tightly capped, it's still gloopy and can be easily applied with a cocktail stick.

For the chassis itself, I thought that I would spray it with the hornblocks still in place as they were held securely by the CSB wires and I didn't want the faff of taking them out. On the other hand, if I used Maskol, I'd spend an age picking bits of rubber out of them. So I reached for the paint box and a roll of masking tape in it.

A quick waft of the spray can - no need to fire up the airbrush for something this simple - and it was done. I used Games Workshop Chaos Black as the colour, having heard good things about the coverage, finish, and its ability to adhere without using a separate etch primer. After it had dried overnight, I went to remove the tape and this is where I found a minor disaster...

IMG_8541.JPG


The glue/fixative/tack/adhesive (what is the right name for the stuff that makes Sellotape stick?) had gone all gooey and was now leaving a sticky residue wherever it had touched the model. There was no alternative but to remove each hornblock and clean it and the corresponding guide up carefully with a fibreglass brush. I didn't want to use solvents, as that could have lifted the paint finish and I'd be back to square one. It took some time, but all has now been restored to a good state of order.

I bought the masking tape a couple of years ago. I have a recollection that it is either Tamiya, or from Precision Paints. I can't be more precise than that as I wasn't really paying attention to the possible consequences. Suffice to say that I won't be using it again, and I'm very glad that this happened on a plain chassis, and not whilst I was painting or lining a locomotive body!

Cheers
Flymo
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jon price
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Re: Another Round...

Postby jon price » Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:23 am

Disaster averted Flymo. How about using blu-tack for these small masking jobs. Easily removed, no residue.

Terry Bendall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Terry Bendall » Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:48 am

The Tamiya tape I have used is a pale yellow in colour and the non sticky side is slightly textured. I have not had problems with this type leaving a residue behind. A red and slightly translucent type that I used to use did leave traces of the adhesive. In the past I have used white spirit on a cotton bud to remove traces of the adhesive. One tip is to put the tape down on a piece of styrene first and then remove it before sticking down to the model. This removes some of "stickiness" of the tape.

Terry Bendall

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David Thorpe
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Re: Another Round...

Postby David Thorpe » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:18 am

There's masking tape and masking tape - I recall that on this forum some some ago someone had a problem with red tape - found it! viewtopic.php?f=17&t=1577 . Tamiya seems to be well thought of.

Also, I wonder if you left the tape in place too long. General advice appears to be that it should be removed fairly soon after spraying. This is only only armchair advice on my part as I have little practical experience but I am currently reading up on it as I've got eight coaches that require painting, three of them in crimson/cream, and the new airbrush sits unused in its box....

DT

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Andy W
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Andy W » Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:31 am

The pale yellow tape mentioned by Terry is terrific. It's easily shaped and rarely leaves a residue, and if it does white spirit will remove it. However, I did have a problem last year when spraying an MR tank's smoke box. I sprayed the body with cellulose, masked it off and sprayed the smoke box etc with enamel. When I removed the tape I had small patches of discolouration on the red. This wasn't residue, it wouldn't clean off. It was like cloudy marks in the body of the paint. It needed a re-spray.

After a trawl of the web, I found others had suffered similarly. It seems that if the paint isn't allowed to dry thoroughly before you apply the tape then gasses can be trapped and cause such marks.

Now I leave the initial coat at least three days to cure fully, I also remove the tape asap, plus I use plain paper and Post-its to mask the majority of the surface, and only use the tape to secure the edges.
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Philip Hall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Philip Hall » Thu Apr 09, 2015 10:02 am

Just a further thought about painting wheels: I don't mask them off and have always found it easier and quicker to wipe off the stray paint on the tyres with Acetone and cotton buds. Almost all of mine are painted with a couple of passes of Humbrol Gunmetal acrylic and Tamiya Rubber Black, with maybe a touch of Tamiya Linoleum Brown, all from cans. I must admit to never having covered up the axle holes in the wheels either; it doesn't seem to have caused a problem, maybe because I have used light passes of the spray cans. I always blacken the front face of the tyres before painting - gun blue for AG wheels and an etch marker pen for Ultrascale.

Philip

Joe Newman
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Joe Newman » Thu Apr 09, 2015 11:05 am

Philip.

May I ask why you use different methods to blacken AG and Ultrascale wheels?

I note that Ultrascale have a disclaimer with their wheels about the use of chemical blackening but I have never understood why.

Presumably your method is connected with this but I don't understand the reason for this.

Joe

Philip Hall
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Philip Hall » Thu Apr 09, 2015 12:30 pm

You're quite right Joe, it's basically about how you use the blackening agents.

Ultrascale have had instances where people have overused gun blue which resulted in damage to the tyres, hence the warning. Many years ago I happened to be talking to David Rogers and he suggested using an etch marker pan, which I have done ever since; it's much more precise in its application. Once the blackening is done I rinse the wheel in water to neutralise the action.

I continue to use gun blue on AG and other steel wheels because I find it works better than the etch marker. You don't have to clean the steel usually, the gun blue works on them straight from the packet. But again, it's important to rinse off once they're done. But the main reason for not using the marker on steel is that it causes the steel to rust, despite what I have always thought was careful cleaning.

Philip

Joe Newman
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Joe Newman » Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:11 pm

Many thanks for the clarification Philip.

Joe

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Flymo748
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Flymo748 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:49 pm

jon price wrote:Disaster averted Flymo. How about using blu-tack for these small masking jobs. Easily removed, no residue.


Good idea! I even have some sitting directly in front of me in my modelling pot.

Next time...

Cheers
Flymo
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Will L
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Re: Sticky business

Postby Will L » Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:53 pm

Flymo748 wrote:...For the chassis itself, I thought that I would spray it with the hornblocks still in place as they were held securely by the CSB wires and I didn't want the faff of taking them out. On the other hand, if I used Maskol, I'd spend an age picking bits of rubber out of them. So I reached for the paint box and a roll of masking tape in it...


Now I would have said that one of the great joys of this kind of CSB construction is that, once you'd mounted the wheels and tested all is well with the chassis, that it is simple to drop the lot out for further detailing and ultimately painting purposes; wheels, axle blocks and all without disassembly. After all, unnecessary Wheel/axle disassembly is not recommended, most particularly if using AG wheels. Also I'm pretty sure I don't approve of painting with the CSB springs in place lest you gum up the lot with paint. I've never found getting them back in that much of a faff, mounting the fixed fulcrum points so they line up horizontally with the axle block fulcrums helps.

Once you've dropped everything out of the chassis, masking the horn guide edges is simpler as there is nothing in the way and you only need to mask the back and treads of the wheels (spay from the front only so as not to paint the axles/bearing blocks). If you dismount the rods for painting, as I expect you will, you do need to remember which axle is which, but you should already have marked the axle blocks so you know they always go back in the same place. I use basic decorators masking tape as I'm not to worried about a little creep round the edges as the bits concerned will be mechanically cleaned/polished before use anyway. I can't say I've ever noticed any residue.

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Flymo748
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Flymo748 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 5:01 pm

David Thorpe wrote:There's masking tape and masking tape - I recall that on this forum some some ago someone had a problem with red tape - found it! viewtopic.php?f=17&t=1577 . Tamiya seems to be well thought of.


Ah, well remembered! That is exactly the problem that I have had. I've had the same slumping of the roll of tape as well, so I suspect that it was the same stuff :-(

David Thorpe wrote:Also, I wonder if you left the tape in place too long. General advice appears to be that it should be removed fairly soon after spraying. This is only only armchair advice on my part as I have little practical experience but I am currently reading up on it as I've got eight coaches that require painting, three of them in crimson/cream, and the new airbrush sits unused in its box....


There's probably a balance to be struck here - long enough for the paint to harden, short enough for the tape to not degrade. I'll clearly have to experiment more, and also obtain some of that Tamiya tape as it seems well recommended.

Have fun with the airbrush. They're great tools when you gain the knack. Perhaps one of the courses at Missenden to hone your craft with it?

Cheers
Flymo
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Flymo748
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Flymo748 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 5:07 pm

Philip Hall wrote:Just a further thought about painting wheels: I don't mask them off and have always found it easier and quicker to wipe off the stray paint on the tyres with Acetone and cotton buds. Almost all of mine are painted with a couple of passes of Humbrol Gunmetal acrylic and Tamiya Rubber Black, with maybe a touch of Tamiya Linoleum Brown, all from cans. I must admit to never having covered up the axle holes in the wheels either; it doesn't seem to have caused a problem, maybe because I have used light passes of the spray cans. I always blacken the front face of the tyres before painting - gun blue for AG wheels and an etch marker pen for Ultrascale.


It's a fine line between masking and cleaning... The last set that I did were with cellulose and were a right b****r to clean off. It took me loads of scrubbing with the fibreglass brush.

The reason for masking the centres was actually the reverse of the wheels. It was to keep the centre of the shorting strips free of paint to help with a good contact on the axles.

Missenden Mar'15 18.JPG


Again, I could have just sprayed them and cleaned them, but the fixing of the strips to the tyres is in itself mechanically fragile and I didn't want to break (any more of) them off.

Thanks for the thoughts though. All valuable stuff.
Cheers
Flymo
Beware of Trains - occasional modelling in progress!
www.5522models.co.uk

dal-t
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Re: Another Round...

Postby dal-t » Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:50 pm

Andy W wrote:The pale yellow tape mentioned by Terry is terrific. It's easily shaped and rarely leaves a residue, and if it does white spirit will remove it.


White spirit might be a bit of overkill. Kabuki tape uses a water-based adhesive, and I have never known it leave a residue on a clean enamel or cellulose finish, although if you have overcoated with Klear you might find it can have a reaction - I messed up several aircraft canopies, that should have been secure under their Klear 'skin', before I twigged the nature of that problem. Now I don't Klear 'glass' surfaces until the masking has gone, and it's back to smear-free results. Nor have I ever had problems from leaving the tape on 'too long' - and the rate of my builds, that means months rather then weeks. It has always lifted cleanly for me, and as long as I have burnished the edge with a toothpick I've never encountered 'runs'. Those who use tape to mask large areas might be interested in Tamiya's latest idea - tape with clear plastic masking ready attached, so you only need to fix at the edge of the protected surface. I'm waiting for the French supplier to get further stocks before I try it - the first shipment sold out 'overnight', apparently.
David L-T

billbedford
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Re: Another Round...

Postby billbedford » Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:07 am

Flymo748 wrote:The reason for masking the centres was actually the reverse of the wheels. It was to keep the centre of the shorting strips free of paint to help with a good contact on the axles.


If you put a slight bend in the central washer of the shorting strips, they with make a direct contact with the face of the bearing. This will be much more positive than the sometimes iffy shorting strips --> axle --> bearing pathway shown in your photo.
Bill Bedford
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Andy W
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Re: Another Round...

Postby Andy W » Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:47 am

Flymo/Bill, I assume these are BB's shorting strips? Do you get them from the EM stores or from Mousa?
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John McAleely
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Re: Another Round...

Postby John McAleely » Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:19 am

We list them in our stores:

BB5 Bill Bedford, etched brass shorting wires for 1/8" axles
BB6 Bill Bedford, etched brass shorting wires for 2mm axles

Although BB5 have been out of stock for some time, and I'm not aware of our restocking options. I've asked Jeremy for an update.
Last edited by John McAleely on Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Added note that I've followed up with Jeremy


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